Adoption is a great way for Florida residents to expand their families. If you are considering this option, it’s helpful to know if you’re eligible and who you can adopt. These are the state’s adoption laws.
Who can adopt
In Florida, adults are permitted to adopt. There are no requirements pertaining to a person’s marital status; married couples including same-sex couples, individual spouses and even single people can legally adopt. Adopting a stepchild is also legal as long as a parent consents and relinquishes their parental rights. However, this is rare in family law.
Adults with physical disabilities are allowed to adopt unless the court deems their disability a threat to their ability to parent.
Who is able to be adopted
Many people can be legally adopted into loving families. Infants can be adopted through agencies where pregnant women decide to give up their children. Some adoptions are closed with the birth mother’s identity unknown, while others are open, meaning the birth mother is known and sometimes maintains a relationship with the adoptive parents.
Children of various ages may be adopted from the foster care system. These kids enter foster care for a wide range of reasons; their biological parents may be deceased or unfit to care for them. When foster parents ultimately adopt a child, it could be the best thing for all parties due to the relationship they’ve already built.
Special needs children can be adopted through specialized agencies. These children often face challenges in terms of finding loving homes. Like foster care, adopting special needs kids is rewarding, and the state might pay for certain expenses toward their care.
Even adults can be adopted in Florida. This is often for inheritance purposes, but a stepparent may share a close bond with their adult stepchild and wish to make them a legal part of their family.